I enjoy it when there’s some variation, but if you actually manage to code in all kinds of different interests for NPC’s to have then it probably would be an even greater addition that forces you to play the game as a different gender as well.
And for the PS question, no, it does not.
I would say do what your comfortable with and do what you want to do. If the characters you have made have a certain orientation and you can’t see them having a different one then I say keep the character as is. If you want to incorporate other sexual orientations, then make new characters for them. If you don’t want to include certain orientations in your game then don’t. It’s your game so I would say do what YOU want to do.
I know some people that don’t feel comfortable with gay/bi relationship due to religion and personal beliefs; if you’re not comfortable with it, don’t feel pressured whatsoever, as everyone should respect your decision.
It’s certainly gonna be important to a lot of people. I’m mainly interested in f/f romances (because it’s already rare seeing it, and even rarer to see it have a happy ending) and I don’t play games that cut me off from a romance based on my gender.
That said, different people have different opinions. If you absolutely don’t feel comfortable with it, forcing yourself to include queer characters isn’t gonna help anyone. (In a perfect world, writing queer characters might help you feel more at ease with such topics, but alas, we don’t live in a perfect world.)
Your personal beliefs are obviously tied up in this (at least that’s how it comes off, since you say you’d feel ‘disturbed’ by letting a female character intended for a male MC be romanced by the female MC as well), so you’re gonna have to ask yourself: Can you see yourself writing queer relationships at all?
Write what makes you comfortable. Forcing yourself to do anything usually doesn’t end well.
As for your second question:
No. The gender you romance in games doesn’t have to say anything about your sexuality. I sometimes romance a man in video games - and that certainly doesn’t make me straight. When I play a male character and romance a man, that also doesn’t make me a gay dude.
Determining whether there’s anything queer about you can be done with a simple question, really. Are you sexually and/or romantically interested in members of your own sex?
If you answered yes, then congrats! You’re sexually and/or romantically interested in members of your own sex!
If you answered no, then congrats! You’re not sexually and/or romantically interested in members of your own sex!
(Not that there can’t be uncertainty in one’s answer, but it’s safe to assume that one’s choices in video games, iphone colours or bath products does not determine your sexuality.)
What you say is all true, however the thing that first drew me here, to Choice of Games, is that I could have the mc be like me in all of these stories and by that I mean gay and still have him be the badass main character as these are some of the very few games (that are not explicitly gay focused, though gay focused games are even rarer) where being gay doesn’t relegate you to being a sideshow.
But @blackrising is certainly right that you shouldn’t write something you personally feel uncomfortable writing, just don’t expect me to play a straight romance game, those are a dime a dozen, even if I were interested in them.
The main romances in my game aren’t bi. But the sex they’re attracted to is set when the reader picks his/her sex.
If writing characters like that is disturbing to you, then do go ahead and offer a variety of romance options, as others have suggested.
If I play a monkey in a game, it doesn’t mean I like peanuts. (But it’s possible that I first realize I like peanuts when playing a monkey.) Still, the answer to your question as written is no.
Yes, yes it is especially important for bisexual with preference toward same sex like me.
especially because it’s hard to find m/m interactive fiction/games that is not there for erotica/porn/titillation purpose… well I enjoy that too but if that’s the only thing that exist? kinda tired of it. I need plot and actual story and character depth dang it
anything else, @blackrising has said everything I wanted to say.
I think it depends on what your future goal is.
If you intend to try and eventually publish it under the Hosted Games label, I’d say that it’s rather important to include M/M and F/F romance options if you intend for it to sell. I myself wouldn’t buy a CoG/HG that focuses heavily on romance but doesn’t include M/M. As a gay man that’s grown accustomed to it being a common feature in most games that run through this site, it would just be a bummer to me.
Now, if you’re just writing something for your own personal use or as practice? Don’t feel pressured to do or include anything you’re not comfortable doing. If you don’t feel comfortable altering your current characters to allow for same-sex romances, try creating a new, separate character that you know right off the bat is going to be eligible for male and female protagonists and see if that still gives you trouble. Experiment. Have fun. Writing lets you do all that.
Well, think of it this way. If you played a game in which there were no straight romance options available, but there were several romance options, how would you feel about the experience? If most games you played were written with lots of romance options (but none for straight characters), how excited would you be about another game that had romance options (but none for straight characters)?
You don’t have to put anything in your game that you don’t like, or don’t feel comfortable writing. But much as with the discussion of what genders people want available in games, part of the draw for a lot of players around here isn’t just the specific options: it’s that they have a hard time finding those options in games elsewhere.
Do you need to include non-straight romances in your game? No. Is that going to be a turn-off for some potential players? Yes. Is that going to be fine with some other potential players? Yes.
I have this thinking, if there was a game where you were forced to be gay or bi and you were a straight person, would that make you upset or not want to play the game? Would it turn you away from the game? If not then go ahead and do the game as you want, in fact do it as you want regardless, but I do believe it’s important.
i like the option to be like myself, even if i don’t always play it. having gender options and orientation are both pluses that let me enjoy games more. If a game has neither its still ok maybe its for a perspective thing or doesn’t believe they can accurately portray someone properly, those are both good reasons. Difficulty writing a story can happen when to much variation comes into play which happens…alot.
All in all its the writers choice, and forcing romance into it to suit everyone is pandering and often can degrade a story.
and no it does not make you gay to play a girl in a game and romance a guy, thats actually healthy and normal for a lot of people regardless of orientation, and comically most get embarrassed about it. its part of our society that we get ingrained embarrassment and think this sort of thing is wrong(sadly, but we are slowly stearing away from that).
I myself am bi and i get embarrassed about doing that stuff despite knowing nothing is wrong with it
A fun route is making a note of orientations but if a certain romance goes against said orientation make a note of it. Give the MC a chance to convince the other character to play for the other team, perchance.
But this only works if the personality of said character allows for this change of heart because love knows no boundaries!
Sry far too romantic in the early hours lol
YES! wholeheartedly agree with that thought. many personalities can become a little more comfy with it, mostly since most are closer to the middle than they may think being just pressure for a lot of people, on the other-hand there are the iron hides.
Love conquers in the end most of the time
To me, having an option is really, really important. I am Bisexual, that mean I should also be cool with straight romance because I swing that way too, right? Well… not really. Being forced to play only straight romance resemble too much with real life where people expect Bi folks to ‘choose’ one end of the spectrum, or telling us we have ‘Straight’ and ‘Gay’ half. When the majority of media is almost exclusively hetero, just by having the option means a lot.
I find myself immediately turned off from straight romance unless there are gay options. Even if the romance is really well done or have the characters I’m interested in, I still won’t play it. If there are gay options however, I find myself able to enjoy the straight route more. Because I can relax knowing that the game doesn’t have anything against me or is straight due to heteronormative thinking and such.
With that said, like other folks already told you, don’t do it if you’re not comfortable with it. But also prepare to accept that some people also might not play your game. (Not because it’s bad or you offend them, but because you don’t have what they’re looking for.) I do think some self-examining could go a long way though. It disturbs you. but WHY does it disturb you?
Good luck with the game!
These are my thoughts. As a bisexual I was very excited to find these choice games because there were a wide variety of romance options for me and no other games have done before unless I played as a woman. It means a lot if the author thinks of lgbt when writing their game but if you can’t it’s okay.
I think that giving the option is laudable, in a world where people busy themselves drawing lines all the time it’s always nice to see someone try and be inclusive. I like to think that though I’m on the unfashionable easy street of being a hetero man I’m quite enlightened when it comes to gender and sexuality. Then again I may be blowing smoke up my own arse thinking that.
For me a great love story is a great love story whether the players are like or unlike myself, in fact some of the best stories that I’ve read feature people who ought to be totally unrelatable to my frame of reference, but that’s a line of conversation that’ll take us well and truly off track.
Having said all that, write what you want, not merely for the fact that it’s your story and you want it that way (though this is perfectly valid in and of itself) but because readers are smart and they know very well when a writer feels out of their depth or comfort zone. It’ll make them just as uncomfortable in the reading of a passage as it will you in the writing of it.
hefts soapbox over his shoulder and wanders off
giggles for eternity because he’s totally an adult
I personally am a cisfemale who has a rather…fluid sexuality. That being said, I’ve always H A T E D it in games when the romance option is just gender-swapped to fit your preferred gender. It seems so…forceful. A la “Creatures Such as We” (that game gave me a lot to think about, man). Personally, I like to make each character their own person, with their own incredibly intricate background and story. This, of course, creates a lot of writing and coding on my end
In my current WIP, I have the option for each character to be romanceable by any gender (there’s 5 or 6 romance options), just because I’m not comfortable coding in sexuality (yet. So this may change). However, I’ve planned out that if you’re nonbinary or female, you cannot marry the princess. Why? Because it’s a “traditional” society, and anyone but a man marrying the princess bodes terribly for future heirs.
THAT BEING SAID: as many people previous have said before, write what makes you feel comfortable. If you don’t feel comfortable writing in non-heterosexual romance options–don’t. If your discomfort with it is that it will detract from your artistic vision – add in some homosexual or bisexual options. Like in Dragon Age. Three. Not Two. Dragon Age II irked me by being all bisexual.
…I think I may need to actually go ahead and code in sexuality in my own game, since I abhor the flip-flopping “I don’t have any choice in being romanced by you! Regardless of whether I’m attracted to you!!!” in games
Its more important to stay faithful to a character and their personality and history rather than arbitrarily making everyone bisexual just for the sake of catering to all possible ROs.
Jenny Yu from the Heroes Rise trilogy is only romancable if the MC is female, this probably bolstered her popularity as she felt more like a person rather than a cardboard stand-in that could be romanced no matter what.
Tin Star is one of the best interactive novels ever written though it didn’t help the suspension of disbelief that every RO was (openly?) bisexual, especially when the story is set in an era where such an orientation was frowned upon by the general public (and the law?).
Thus its better for each RO to have their own personal sexual identity, probably helps in fleshing out their character, making them more individualistic. And if their orientation is considered a social taboo in the context of the story in which they exist, then it should be brought up in some way that is organic to the story, relationships need to feel real, both between the RO and MC and the reaction of background characters.
You’d actually be surprised by how common and nonchalant homosexuality was in the Old West. Hollywood is the main reason people think otherwise.
I don’t know, in some cases it does help to be pragmatic about it if there’s only a few available LIs, just to ensure no one feels shafted if their only option is the character they don’t like.